Grand National Championships Event Procedures  

$975 registration fee  

The Bands of America Grand National Championships, presented by Yamaha, is America’s premier marching band event. First and foremost an educational performance and evaluation opportunity, registration is open to all high school marching bands. Grand Nationals is a celebration of musical excellence that also includes an Expo, all in the spectacular Lucas Oil Stadium, which was designed with marching music performances in mind. 

Grand National participating bands receive:  

  • Participating band students are admitted free to their non-performance day Prelims and Semi-Finals general admission seating (new in 2021!) 
  • 25 Field Passes* for Preliminaries, with an option to purchase more (for the day your band performs) 
  • 6 Director / Staff Badges* good for admission to Prelims, Semi-Finals, and Finals, with an option to purchase more  
  • One educational videographer pass at band check-in (ticket or field pass required for stadium entrance)  

*Face value of tickets and passes: $6,405

All Bands 325 Miles or Further from Indianapolis  
Bands of America recognizes that the travel distance for some bands will necessitate missing one to two days of school just for travel time. In order to retain the integrity of Grand Nationals as a national championship and enable bands from across the nation to participate, BOA will allow bands traveling from schools located more than 325 miles (one way) from Indianapolis to choose to either be part of the regular performance time draw OR choose to participate in a special draw for the first block of times of Friday Prelims. Bands from schools more than 325 miles (one way) from Indianapolis must select their preference on the application form. 

Thursday Prelims Volunteer Opportunity  
It is feasible for groups within an approximate 200-mile radius of Indianapolis to perform on Thursday, return home for a full day of school on Friday, then return to Indianapolis. Bands can select this option on the application form. 

If you do not qualify for the milage option and/or do not volunteer for Thursday, all other bands will be placed in a random draw for the remaining performance times. 

Grand Nationals Adjudication Format  
The Grand National Championships is a three-day Preliminary, Semi-Finals, and Finals event that has a maximum of 118 participating bands. Judging responsibilities will be divided into Panel 1 and Panel 2, alternating between blocks over Thursday and Friday, balanced with like numbers of bands from each class. A minimum of 30 bands will then advance to Semi-Finals with a formula that ensures inclusion of representatives of each of the four classes and top scoring bands from the two separate Prelims panels and the overall event. (See BOA Official Procedures and Adjudication Handbook for specifics.) The top 12 scoring bands from Semi-Finals, regardless of class, advance to Saturday evening’s Finals.  

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